Would You “Sabotage” Your Special Needs Child For More Services?

We all know the bad news about the economy. We also know that raising a child can be expensive, and raising a special needs child can be incredibly expensive. Public schools and agencies can’t keep up with demand, so only the most extreme cases qualify for services. Usually this involves an assessment or examination. Many times I struggle with myself – I want my child to do well on these tests, but I also want her to get as much assistance and support as possible.

Other special needs moms say things like, “Well, I know he can do that task but he was tired so he wouldn’t cooperate,” and I wonder if they put their child to bed late on purpose. Or a caregiver will “forget” a medication, or let a dietary rule lapse before an appointment. And I wonder if they really forgot something they have done every day faithfully up until that point. Did they actually not know the ingredients of that food when they read all labels diligently? Or are they deliberately sabotaging their child in order to gain more assistance? And would I do the same?

It seems to be more and more cut-throat out there. Caregivers must constantly advocate for the special needs children in their lives. My fear is that anything my child is given means that another child with greater support needs might not get helped. I feel guilty about that. But on the other hand, anything my child is denied means she may never reach her true potential. She may have to learn to live with a challenge that she could have overcome if it had been addressed in therapy. Isn’t it my job to give her the best future possible?

So where do you stand? Where do you draw the line? Have you ever sabotaged your child accidentally, or on purpose? It’s okay, your secret is safe with me because I really, truly understand.

About the Author

Rosie Reeves is a writer and mother of three; including one with special needs. She works side-by-side with her daughter’s therapists, teachers and doctors. Rosie has also served as the Los Angeles Special Needs Kids Examiner. She can be reached at rosie327@aol.com. Rosie is a member of the PedSafe Expert team


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